LIFE IN LOCKDOWN – NORTH WEST FILM ARCHIVE launch #Lockdownlife Appeal
The North West Archive have launched #Lockdownlife Appeal is asking for the public’s help to create as wide-ranging a picture as possible of what life was really like in the North West of England during the 2020 Coronavirus pandemic. They’re looking for everyone’s perspectives on these unprecedented and worrying times – social distancing, lockdown life, friends and loved ones far from reach and for them to be filmed and sent in for the archive can preserve personal experiences of this time for future generations. .
Acquisition & Documentation Officer Nick Gladden recorded and subtitled a video appeal that was shared around social media and on a dedicated page on NWFA website, created by Digital Access Officer Jonathan Howell.
“We explored different avenues to find how best to collect any footage that was offered – we wanted to make it simple to contact us and share footage, but also ensure we had the capacity to receive it and download it safely.
In the end we recommended file transfer services like Dropbox and Wetransfer (addressed to our main email account) rather than directing users to a specific ‘bucket’ to fill with content.
Nick has also been working with colleagues in our local Archives+ partnership and record offices around the wider region to co-ordinate the appeal and combine efforts to collect relevant material.”
More info on this appeal here including Nick Gladden’s video appeal:
A Film A Day
Will McTaggart, Cataloguing and Access Assistant explains
“We decided to do this for a number of reasons:
As a means to showcase material from our collection on a regular basis and gently introduce people to films they may not have come across before by providing short introductions on social media.
As a way to reflect the historical depth and geographical breadth of the collection
As a reassurance, and a shop window, to remind folk that the Archive is ‘open for business’ and still able to provide a service.
In addition, as part of this initiative we’ve tried to showcase films where there’s a link to the current situation. For example we highlight essential workers like postal delivery workers, nurses and refuse collectors. There have also been nods to crisis planning, domestic routines, Monday Motivation, and what would have been the start to the County Championship cricket season.
Several of the showcased films are available to view online via the BFI Player but we’ve also added further content to our Vimeo channel too.
The BBC picked up on our initiative and broadcast a short TV item on North West Today on 19th April (featuring footage and a recorded FaceTime interview with Marion Hewitt) plus Geoff Senior was invited to talk about it on Radio Lancashire on 30th April. Manchester Metropolitan University also published an article on their website with comments from me.
Whilst it’s not been possible to gather viewing data from all sources at this point, initial signs show that the regularity of the postings has generated positive interest, followers and interactions on social media.”
NWFA have been helping various local groups and authorities to reach out to their communities as part of the revised VE Day celebrations. A short edit of some of their footage taken on the day and also showing Home Front scenes was prepared and shared with groups and media teams in Manchester, Salford, Rochdale, St Helens and Liverpool. It has also had take-up from members of the Scout Association in the UK, who are now running online meetings for their members through Zoom and are organising activities on the VE Day theme in the run up to the day.